Like anywhere in the world, it pays to have all your ‘ducks in a row’ when in search of a rental property. If you have never rented before, like us, you may need some references from previous neighbours or something along the lines of this.
We actually wrote a short cover letter introducing ourselves (as we didn’t have any references) and why we were looking to rent (just moved to Australia…). The cover letter only take 5 mins to write and in doing this you are probably miles ahead already of most of the competition.
When going to the inspection – dress neatly and park your car respectfully and not on the grass or blocking the driveway! Simple stuff really. Put yourself in the owners shoes and their perspective.
Most agents have an online platform you can register with so go ahead and pre-fill out as much as you can on this platform. All your details are saved and in a lot of cases you can use the online platform for other rental properties as well. If you then like the property you can almost hit ‘apply’ there and then. This will give you another opportunity to get ahead of the competition.
There is competition out there and in some cities it can be fierce. Have all your documentation ready to go (copies of) and applications filled out. You will need copies of your work contract detailing pay and the likes as well. The landlord NEEDS to know you will pay the rent. It is uncomfortable providing personal details like this but there is no way around it.
We used realestate.com.au to find a rental property.
Buying a home in Australia
We are currently searching for a home to buy in Australia. Once we have one and completed the process I will complete this blog on the entire experience and process. First in the process is: pre-approval of finance.
In search for our new home first we needed to secure some money so if we saw a home we like we can go with a ‘cash offer’ and not be subject to a finance clause in the buying contract (please enlist your solicitor to see whether this method is right for you).
We have enlisted spectrumfinancial as our mortgage broker(s) and they have secured us with some pre-approved money; so when we do come across a home we love we can then try and secure it.
More to come as we go through the process of finding our forever home.
05 JUL 18 update – We have been searching for a home to buy but still no luck finding something we like. The only real tips I have here is to narrow down your search area and keep an eye on the market online. Often the same houses which are not selling, re-appear a month or 2 later. It is easy to spot the pattern. Have a pre-approved home loan ready to go so the finance clause in the contract can be left out. This is a very big carrot for a seller and more likely you can get the new home at a discount.
26 AUG 18 update – well, we have secured our first home in Australia. After months and months of looking we decided to try a ‘letter box drop’ in our preferred area asking if anyone was interested in selling to a family – no agents involved. It worked. A seller called us and we negotiated a price. Settlement occurs mid September and we are stoked. The extras you have to add to the agreed sales price are stamp duty and title transfer fee (both are not cheap!). The process of not having ant agents involved is super easy – and cheaper as you are not paying agents commission on any sales price. All you do is get your solicitor to give you a pre-filled out contract and take this to the seller to sign. They then give it to their solicitor and the rest is straight forward.